Interior Ministry puts Sharifs on Exit Control List

ISLAMABAD: Sources in the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) confided in Pakistan Today that FIA’s immigration head Wajid Zia (JIT’s head), with the approval of Interior Ministry, has enlisted the name of Sharif family members on Exit Control List (ECL) on Friday.

Following the Panama Leaks case verdict of Supreme Court of Pakistan, names of ex PM Nawaz Sharif, Maryam Nawaz, Hussain Nawaz, Hassan Nawaz, and Captain (retd) Muhammad Safdar were put on ECL. Until the accountability court decides their fate within the given six months, no one can leave the country.

The source also said that, in all the high profile cases, NAB puts accused people in ECL regularly, adding it is a matter of routine.

‘The movement of an accused wanted under National Accountability Ordinance (NAO) 1999 can be restricted by the investigation agency; following this, Ministry of Interior (MoI) is under obligation to put names of Sharifs in ECL,” he said.

It is noted that on Friday, Supreme Court removed Nawaz Sharif from office in a unanimous verdict over corruption allegations.

The verdict, delivered by a five-member supreme court caps year of political controversy, unleashed by the Panama Papers leak, which documented the involvement of Sharif’s children in the purchase of high-end London property through offshore companies.

The SC bench also referred all material gathered in the investigation to the court of the national accountability bureau and recommended opening cases against the prime minister and his three children—Maryam, Hassan, Hussain—as well as Capt Safdar.

“He is no more eligible to be an honest member of the Parliament, and he ceases to be holding the office of prime minister,” the judge Ejaz Afzal Khan said in court.

The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has been asked to de-notify the prime minister from his National Assembly seat to fulfil the technicalities of implementing the order. The Supreme Court said the ECP should de-seat the PM for not disclosing his role in the Dubai-based Capital FZE company in his nomination papers, saying that this meant he was not ‘honest’ and ‘truthful’.

Justice Ejaz Afzal Khan, who had headed the apex court’s implementation bench following its April 20 order on the Panama Papers case, announced that the larger bench had unanimously deemed PM Sharif unfit for holding office and would also order an accountability court to open references against him and his family.

The judges ruled that he had been dishonest to the Parliament and courts, and could not be deemed fit for his office.

It may be mentioned here that Hussain and Hassan are currently abroad.

However, when contacted FIA’s immigration head, he neither confirmed nor denied the information.

Former Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) President Barrister Ali Zafar said that those members of Sharif family who have been mentioned in the Supreme Court verdict to be trialled by NAB accountability court would have to seek a bail from high court forthwith. He added that if any of those accused want to leave the country, they would have to seek permission from the court – the way General Musharaf had done.

News Reporter